Tag Archives: process

Process Post #13 (Paper #2)

This semester I created an amateur personal blog for our Publishing 101 class and learned the basic “ins and outs” of WordPress templates for online content creation. While some of my classmates created blogs about food, travel or websites showcasing their musical career, I focused more on learning about online content creation and website building. My website’s content was more of a personal blog, as I found content creation to be the hardest part of the exercise itself. I felt as though I wasn’t accomplishing anything (this semester) interesting enough to have a blog about, as I go to school full time and work an average of thirty hours a week. So my audience was non-existent. That is not to say personal blogs don’t find audiences regardless. An example of this fact is comedian Mike Birbiglia. Birbiglia started as a blogger who would write about his travels and post his material online. The final result ended up with him turning the most popular stories into his first one hour stand-up special: My Secret Public Journal (Birbiglia, 2015). So it can be done. For me, I found I personally didn’t have the time this semester to do anything that would be content worthy, other than my weekly attendance in the inaugural class of Yuk Yuks University. I did manage to capture the attention of a small following. Ultimately though, the lack of time and dedication towards keeping the viewer’s interest proved the need for two important components in order to be a successful blogger: commitment and follow through on content. As a result, the most important take away for me from this course was: time management. I am excited to take more publishing courses in the future, but upon reflection, think I would excel more at the marketing and advertising aspect, so that the focus is less about the content creation and more about the message itself.

Publishing 101 provides an overall introduction to the world of publishing, especially for Communications students like me, who have no idea how to create the digital media format we have spent years studying about. Finally, a chance to do some “hands on” learning. My favourite readings included the week four reading: Design Machines. How to survive in the digital Apocalypse (Gertz, 2015). I loved the way it outlined the similarities of how websites were built using the same site layout. Readings I did not like were: the week 7 reading by John Green (2013), I didn’t have an issue with the article itself, more so the fact that the link was broken and never corrected. The other reading retrieved from the website: https://www.bloomberg.com/features/2017-who-replies-to-trumps-tweets/ felt as though it didn’t align with the course content. It felt as though it had been added more for the political aspect, rather than the context of the overall course content for the week.

While I found it enjoyable to work on the design on my blog, I don’t think I will continue using my blog for now. For me, it is about the commitment of the time required to be a successful blogger. This course has inspired me to pledge more personal commentary on online articles, since I have opinions to voice on social media. The websites I frequent for news and culture tend to be: Facebook and the A.V club. The only other online attachment I participate in is watching YouTube. As an online content creator, I think the medium itself is in a bit of a jumble. Facebook has lost its original message of “connection” for a few years now. Facebook used to be a place to build an online community. Participants shared images, wrote statuses, everything on the site was created by the users on your friends list, a personal newsletter from the key people in your life. Sometime in 2011, the focus began to change. Facebook became less about sharing personal updates and more about sharing content. When I go on my Facebook newsfeed now by comparison to 2011, it is mainly just people re-sharing videos and photos, I can’t tell you the last time I actually read a status update that was a personal comment and not a political statement. As a result, other websites have begun to form to recapture sharing people’s actual lived moments in time. Instagram is now the place for people to share their photos and post personal updates. Communication via Twitter is on the rise (not just socially, but academically and in the corporate world) as well (Williams, 2018).

Another website I find it hard to create content for is: YouTube. The original message of YouTube was “Broadcast Yourself” however, every two weeks it seems there is another scandal arising from Google combined with excessive demands required to participate. The way the YouTube algorithm works promotes the top viewed users approved by Google. It is no longer a social network of people sharing content, but more of a sponsored hub of creators that have the same Into/Outro/Personality. The top YouTubers’ of 2008 was a drastically different mix of contributors compared to the top YouTubers’ of today. Nowadays, YouTube is focused more on maintaining corporate relations and staying “advertiser friendly” – than letting its users find special hidden video content.  I’m not sure if it’s possible anymore for someone to create an account (out of the blue) and start posting videos, with no experience in content creation. Clearly, in today’s market there is a very visible bubble of who the algorithm picks to promote.

While I think it is important to have a digital identity, I find the people I talk to about social media, are just tired and fed up. Social media has become more of a hotbed for political propaganda and scandal, for example: Facebook’s recent Cambridge Analytica indiscretion (Wikipedia, 2018). Society appears to be leaning towards avoiding or just completely deleting their social media accounts, as the trust in these online websites has disintegrated. I believe something new is on the horizon and will stir things up in the world of online social media. We have been stuck in a digital monopoly for quite some time and it’s starting to show in the content of the websites themselves. It is ironic to me that in 2004, Facebook was initiated under a cloud of theft and fraud with Mark Zuckerberg being accused of stealing the algorithm from his dorm mates and now fourteen years later, the very same accusation in relation to data mining, may be its undoing (Carlson, 2010).

References:

Birbiglia, M. (2015). My secret public journal. Retrieved from: https://mysecretpublicjournal.blogspot.ca

Carlson, N. (2010). At last – the full story of how Facebook was founded. Business Insider. Retrieved from: http://www.businessinsider.com/how-facebook-was-founded-2010-3

Gertz, T. (2015). Design machines. How to survive in the digital apocalypse. Retrieved from: https://louderthanten.com/articles/story/design-machines

Green, J. (2013). On self-publishing and Amazon. Retrieved from: http://fishingboatproceeds.tumblr.com/post/31026577075/on-self-publishing-and-amazon

Mosendz, P. (2017). The seven types of people who tweet at Trump. Retrieved from: https://www.bloomberg.com/features/2017-who-replies-to-trumps-tweets/

Wikipedia, (2018). Cambridge Analytica. Retrieved from: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cambridge_Analytica

Williams, S. (2018). 4 ways to use Twitter for schools to increase engagement. Campus Suite. Retrieved from: https://www.campussuite.com/4-ways-use-twitter-for-schools-increase-engagement/

Process Post (Week 12)

This week, we were asked to create community standards for our website. Here is the list of guidelines I have created:

In general, please move through and interact with the website using respect. You are encouraged to share your opinions and interact with me and others. Please feel free to share my content, making sure that you give credit to me.

For comments, please avoid:

  • Racist, sexist, or otherwise offensive language
  • Personal attacks on others
  • Threats
  • Sharing viruses
  • Promoting commercial content

I have chosen these guidelines because they promote a positive, respectful environment. There are not a lot of them because I do not want to bombard my readers with rules. If any activity becomes a problem, I will address it and adjust my guidelines accordingly.

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Process Post 9

Google Analytics has been one of the software I use the most for finding out information about my blog. I have recently been tracking how much reach my blog has been getting since I started it back in January. I am pleasantly surprised about the amount of users that are reading my blog. Some of …

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Process Post #12

Process Post: Develop community guidelines for your site. Why are those the right guidelines for you? How will you implement them?

My website doesn’t really have any social aspect to it for commentary or discussion. However, I do feel that community guidelines are an important part of a website. I believe people are entitled to say what they want as long as it isn’t harmful to others, but also guidelines can be used to keep things on the topic since internet comment sections are notoriously bad at keeping on track. I think giving people upvote/downvote systems work as a way of self-moderation as people socially want to get thumbs up, as well as the community itself moderating each other to keep the discussion positive. I don’t personally use sites like Reddit that often but when I need to find information there are certain pages on Reddit for the things I’m looking up info on like bands I follow or updates on things I use like apps. (Pokemon GO’s online community is a Reddit page and all information is on their Reddit page, it is the one place to go for updates on the game since I am the last person still playing it that I know of), and the discussions are on topic and comments are sorted by most useful by the highest liked comments as voted by the community.

Process Post #11

Process Post: Create a story out of media only: a sequence of images, an audio production, a video production. Avoid using text if you can.

 

😻🍕 |   😺🍕     🐊|   😾🍕🐊 | 😿 🐊 | FIN

Not my best, but seriously this weeks lecture was good I enjoyed the little writing workshop we had. I feel like that is something that’s missing from High School to University is that transition from high school writing style to full-on APA University Academic “smart talk” its something I still struggle with as I like to write similar to my own talking style and use a lot of slang and made up phrases. I find I struggle the most with commas in essays and papers, as I either use, too, many, or not enough. I’m not sure why it was just something we never really thoroughly covered in English 12. I just remember reading Jurassic Park and watching Macbeth and somehow from that I got a B+.

Process Post (Week 11)

A couple weeks ago, our TA suggested that we should collaborate with other classmates to create content for our blogs. I paired up with Jade and Sam to create a YouTube video where to try not to sing or dance to catchy songs. We wanted to do this because it encompassed all of our blogs themes (YouTube, music, and vines). Here’s the final product.

 

 

 

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Process Post (Week 10)

For this week’s process post, we are supposed to discuss how we plan to integrate more transmedia into our online publication.

Over the last few months, I have been building my online voice, and as a result, I have started to represent myself on many different platforms. Currently, my website allows people to follow me on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Spotify and YouTube. Since I am trying to create the same type of persona on all of them, I would consider this one of the ways I am making use of transmedia.

Moving forward, I want to dive into a persona that I have been developing for awhile. I want to talk and share about my experience growing up in both America and Canada. This is what I like to call my “americanadian” persona. This is a unique story that I wish to tell people about on multiple platforms. From posting about my daily struggles of bouncing between the two countries, to writing about culture and reverse culture shock, to comparing the two nations. I plan to do these things on Facebook, YouTube, and my website. I want to use these platforms because I think they are all different, and will allow me to tell my story in different ways.

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let’s reflect

As we head towards final presentations next week, it’s time to take a moment and reflect on the progression of my brand throughout this semester. 

Through this semester, I’ve really solidified who I am as a creator, and as a brand. I will continue to live my these three key words that I consider to be my mission and value:

  • relatable
  • inspirational
  • attainable

I’ve also gone more into figuring out who my tribe is, and who I want them to be. This has been essential for the huge change in my visual vision. To go from the monochrome, desaturated vibe to visuals filled with more warmth and colour has had its challenges, but also its rewards. The use of colour has allowed me to keep the “life” of an image, rather than sucking that all out just to stick to an aesthetic. This has been especially beneficial for travel photos, as it just didn’t make sense to take out colour in photos that display travel destinations. Although my followers may have dropped a little bit in numbers due to this aesthetic change, I’m finding who my true tribe is and I think that’s more valuable. At the end of the day, my brand is me, and I have to stay true to myself.

I’m excited to continue blogging, to continue creating content for my social platforms, and just to continue on this journey. Blogging and content creation has been the most scary, yet rewarding adventure. It’s brought me opportunities beyond my wildest imagination. This is my story, and I’m grateful to be able to write it and tell it.

Process Post #9 Analysed

This weeks lecture was all about the ins and outs of Google analytics and other sorts of algorithms. Stuff like this really makes the course feel like a CMNS course. That’s what I think I like about the Publishing program is that it feels like a technical CMNS course where we actually get to see and make physical things instead of sitting around reading about McLuhan and Marx over and over again. So it was nice to see something new! The guest lecturer was also very interesting although I felt he was trying to get us all to follow him on Twitter. But hey the course is all about self-promotion so no biggie

Process Post: What surprised you about your findings in Google Analytics? Demonstrate how it may change your online publication in concrete ways.

My results didn’t surprise me as again this is more of a personal blog so I have done little to promote it but it is nice to know how/what to do with GA for when I need it in the future!

Process Post 10: Peer Review 3 Lemons to Oranges

Peer review #3 Lemons to Oranges http://woolleyh.com/

 

First Impressions:

When I first landed on the page I was greeted by a very colorful transition intro page, sticking to the main theme of Lemons and oranges. After the colourful splash page there is a vote section for what to do when life gives you lemons with humorous responses.

 

Accessibility:

The top menu works great although a slight issue I would have is that the dark font is hard to see on the colourful header although once I scrolled down a background appeared which made the menu options visible, but other than that all links work and I tested the site on a Microsoft Surface 3 and iPhone 8+ both using the chrome browser and the website looked fine!

 

Content:

The about page is very detailed in well… About info and the random facts are again humorous, the best part of the about page for me personally was the section labeled “My Cats” as the section contains six lovely photos of cats.

The Blog page contains multiple recipes and how to tutorials, as well as a few personal posts. What’s really nice is the implemented feature to allow custom serving sizes to change the recipe to match that request.

The Gallery page contains artwork drawn by the author (I assume?) clicking on the artwork leads to a zoomed in picture one could use to save/download the image. A feature I would like would be maybe a small description or reason/description of each image. Just a little something-something to go with the image

 

Final thoughts:

This is a really cute little food blog! I really like the recipes although I feel like those and the articles marked “random” should be separated perhaps? Other than that I like the use of bright colors and opening page feels really welcoming. The only question I have is, in the beginning, it says this is a blog for transforming. Leading me to think it was going to be some emotional journey blog, with a nice colorful backdrop, but turned out to be less emotionally investing. This isn’t a bad thing but first viewers might be scared off by the thought of having to be emotionally invested as the opening text might suggest the content of the website is about. Other than that it was a great website to read and I am looking forward to seeing what else comes out of it! *****

****Correction, I thought the posts were together but I realized there was a menu on the top of the site labeled “travel” however on the bottom menu the one I used while reviewing the Travel section is not there. An easy minor fix!

Process: Presentations and Personal Biases

This week we had the pleasure of having Patrick Pennefather join our class to give us some tips on how to rock our pitches and presentations. He was an amazing presenter; engaging, funny and confident. One of the most interesting things he mentioned were biases; how we all have our own biases about ourselves in terms […]

without words

Today’s challenge: tell my brand story without words.

Here’s a quick screenshot of the feed I have planned for my Instagram account in the next little while, and this tells my brand story. The first 9 photos you see when you click onto my username should always represent who I am as a brand, it should tell my story. Why? Because these 9 photos often decide whether or not I capture a new follower or not. It needs to tell my brand story.

Process Post (Week 9)

This week, we discussed the role of Facebook in our lives, and how it influences us. Here are the four questions we were asked to think about.

What could happen to facilitate the end of Facebook?

Honestly, it is hard to imagine a world without Facebook. Although people my age have begun to decrease their use of it, it is still a dominant social media platform. At first, I had the idea that a newer social media could decrease Facebook’s popularity. However, upon further thought, I realized that there are already many newer platforms, and yet Facebook continues to remain popular. Therefore, I think that the only way Facebook would truly ‘end’ is if the company were to shut down.

What constraints does Facebook impose on us?

One of the biggest controversial things about Facebook is the fact that they track almost everything we do. It has gotten to the point where people suspect that they listen to us using the microphones in our phones and computers. They use this information to bombard us with ads and content that we find relevant. They can even track us outside of the actual app or site. They do this by allowing us to log in to different websites using our Facebook credentials and by only letting us open articles on the app within their browser.

Reflect on how Facebook influences what we post and do in everyday life.

Personally, I use Facebook to post photos and updates about my life so that my older family can keep up with me. This includes posting when I am in a new relationship. I also use it to entertain myself and to message friends.

How can we break free from these constraints?

Again, I am not sure how you can break free from the constraints of Facebook, other than by deleting the app or disactivating your account. We could move towards other platforms to connect with our friends and family, but realistically, those platforms would impose their own constraints on us.

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it’s all about the story

What is a brand story? Seems like week after week, my process posts start with an important question to consider. 

This week we had a few presenters from Echo, a storytelling agency. You read that right, storytelling. You see, it’s not just about a brand image that we’re creating, it’s all about the story.

Here were a few key take-aways for me on what a brand story should do:

  • create an emotional response from your audience
  • express and explain beyond just the surface level
  • dives deeper and brings about engagement from your audience

What makes our brands unique in comparison to others is the unique value we bring to the table. That lies in our brand story, and is what compels an audience to stay with us.

Process: Innovation and Selling Yourself

This week we had the pleasure of having Iain Begg from SFU Innovates join us to talk about innovation. He talked a lot about different groups that are working on innovative projects and how they got funding for them. It didn’t really feel too relevant to me until Suzanne mentioned that with most of us […]

Process: The Challenges

While I’ve improved from PUB101, my biggest challenge is still posting my work on social media. Posting doesn’t totally freak me out as much as it used to but I still find it difficult to do and I’m not entirely sure why. I’ve been working on a series of illustrations I call Heartwork. I finished […]

Process: Storytelling

This week we had the pleasure of having Shannon and Lauren from Echo Storytelling tell us a little bit about how to craft amazing stories. Storytelling is such an important part of the human experience. From legends that are passed down from generation to generation to advertisements, storytelling is at the heart of human culture. […]

alignment

We know our mission, we know our audience (thanks to help of analytics). And now the question is, do they align? 

Let’s look at a quick rundown of my current audience insights:

  • 54% women
  • 46% men
  • 37% ages 18-24
  • 34% ages 25-34
  • 18% United States
  • 10% Canada
  • 2% Vancouver
  • 1% New York
  • 1% Los Angeles
  • 1% London
  • 1% Toronto

So far, I think everything is aligned. It makes sense that geographically, my audience comes from locations that are similar to Vancouver: big city feel. As well, all of those cities and countries are English speaking, which also makes sense because my content is written in English. Furthermore, I target the Millennial age group, so it’s reassuring to know that majority of my audience is between the ages of 18-35. Looks like we’re on the right track!

Community Guidelines

In light of past, recent, and unfortunately continuing stories of people being harassed online, it has come to my attention that guidelines must be established if there is to be a comments section.

Maria Konnikova (2013) writes about the ‘online dishibition effect’, which is basically where the moment in which one sheds their “identity the usual constraints on your behaviour go, too”. This is especially true in cases where users can comment anonymously, which may encourage participation, but has just gone to increase uncivilly and incredibly negative comments.

I would like to encourage participation, but it seems necessary that I point out that there is a fine line between free speech and hate speech. Due to some of the sensitive topics that may be discussed here on this blog, it might be beneficial for these guidelines to be understood before writing a comment:

No racism, sexism, or any sort of hate comments whatsoever.

No promotional comments unless previously validated through the admin beforehand.

Any violation of these guidelines will prompt the removal of the comments by admin. Comments are taken down if admin doesn’t think it contributes to the conversation or is irrelevant or hateful in any way, or threatens other readers or authors. If there are any questions, please email the admin for more information.

When it comes to people’s safety, some form of filtration is necessary. If a comment is not constructive to a conversation, it will not be included. I love to hear feedback and opinions on the matter. But in a space that is supposed to be one in which people should come to for positivity in an already hate-filled world, I need to establish this before my website goes further. 

A Winter Story

All the reasons to love winter for those who suffer from SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder):

    

Please dismiss my childish artistic skills. I just want everyone to try and look at winter more positively! I definitely didn’t cover all of it either. What are your favorite things about winter?

Transmedia Ideas

Some transmedia ideas for my health and wellness blog include:

  • Podcasts/audio segments — perhaps on Soundcloud?
  • Youtube (interviews with others, videos in general)

This would probably need to come with a more structured timeframe on when to post. For example, a blog post every Monday to start off the week and perhaps a video or audio segment every Friday. It would be a bit more structured than a vlog, and would allow for different interactions with the website in many ways for readers, leading them to become part of the conversation by being listeners and viewers as well. For me, I find my passion lies more with video editing and what not so I would prefer to do health interviews with students over video but I know some topics like those revolving around mental health are a bit personal so the interviewee may want to be anonymous and having an audio segment instead of a video one might be less invasive.